The global pandemic has significantly impacted our lives in both challenging and positive ways. Over the past year, artists from the Hat Art Club and the Medicine Hat Potters Association have been on a creative journey in response to life during the pandemic. They asked themselves questions such as, “How has my life been altered?” “Has the pandemic impacted my creative practice?” and, “How do I communicate this experience through visual expression?” This journey provided each of the forty-six artists featured in Made in Isolation an opportunity for self-reflection, a reason to “be in the studio,” and most importantly, an outlet to express a personal perspective.
Artworks within this exhibition range from uplifting landscape paintings by Elizabeth Kirschenman to psychologically complex figurative paintings by Dale Beaven to joyful ceramic vessels by Joan Glockner. The seventy-five works featured in this exhibition have been skilfully executed through numerous approaches and mediums, such as detailed calligraphy, paper clay porcelain, quilted patchwork, and embroidered cotton on linen. Made in Isolation encompasses multiple perspectives and documents an unprecedented time in human history.
About the Hat Art Club
The Hat Art Club is a not-for-profit society that is at the centre of visual arts in Medicine Hat. The club’s facilities are located in the Medicine Hat Cultural Centre, located on the campus of the Medicine Hat College. A major focus for the club is to provide a range of educational opportunities in the various disciplines of visual arts. The club offers weekday and weekend educational programing to support the growth of members in expanding their artistic knowledge, skills and experience. In response to the pandemic and this unusual period in history, we introduced to online live streamed lessons to maintain engagement and development for our members.
2021 will mark 75 years of the Hat Art Club providing art classes for Medicine Hat and area. The club’s founders Mrs. Helen Beny Gibson and Rev. L.T.H Pearson attended art classes at Banff School of Fine Arts and agreed that art instruction was something the cultural scene of Medicine Hat community needed. in 1945 with the support of 30 like-minded people and the pooling of resources they gained enough support to use the City Council chambers to hold their art lessons. Volunteers with a passion for promoting visual arts in Medicine Hat have collaboratively operated and fought to provide this service and space to the community since that time.
The club locally continues to provide high quality teaching and support for member’s artistic development and participation in Hat Art Club exhibitions as well as provincial, national and international ones. Working together consistently to support the vision of the founders, a key mandate of the club and our local member art and culture advocates, the club continue to support the importance of ‘art’ in the lives of individuals and in the development of a rich vibrant communities where people want to work, live and play.